Emotional Wellbeing

The Blue Effect: How the Color Blue Affects Our Well-Being

December 16, 2022
The Wellness Tribe Team

Blue is a calming colour that is often associated with feelings of peace and tranquillity. This is why many people find that being around blue spaces, such as a clear blue sky or a deep blue ocean, can make them feel better. 

Spending time in blue spaces with a lot of blue in the colour scheme – can positively affect our mental health and well-being. The colour blue has long been associated with calmness and serenity, and research has shown that being in blue spaces can help us feel more relaxed and at peace. In this article, we will examine how blue spaces can provide us with a sense of well-being and improve our mood.

Why Is Blue So Special?

There are a few reasons why blue spaces can positively affect our mood and well-being. For one, the colour blue has been shown to have a calming effect on the mind. In fact, many people associate the colour blue with feelings of peace and tranquility. This is because blue is often associated with the sky and the ocean, which are both known for their calming effects.

One study published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology found that people who spent time in a room with blue walls reported feeling more relaxed and less stressed than those who were in a room with white walls. The researchers also found that the blue room was more effective at lowering blood pressure and heart rate than the white room.

Provide Anxiety Relief

One of the reasons why blue spaces can improve our mood is that they can help to reduce stress and anxiety. Blue has been shown to have a calming effect on the mind and body and can help lower heart rate and blood pressure. This is why many hospitals and healthcare facilities use blue as a calming colour in their design. So being around blue spaces can help reduce stress and anxiety and make us feel more relaxed and at peace.

A Greater Focus and Concentration

The Blue Effect: How the Color Blue Affects Our Well-Being
Photo by Arisa Chattasa on Unsplash

Blue spaces can also improve our mood by enabling us to focus and concentrate. The colour blue has been shown to affect our cognitive abilities positively and can help improve our focus and concentration. This is why many schools and offices use blue in their design, as it can help improve productivity and focus. In addition, being around blue spaces can help improve our cognitive abilities, making us feel more alert and focused.

Benefits Beyond Mental Health

In addition to the psychological benefits of blue spaces, they can also have physical health benefits. For example, being around blue spaces can help to improve our immune system, as the colour blue has been shown to have antimicrobial properties. This means it can help kill bacteria and other germs that can cause illness. So being around blue spaces helps protect our health and keep us feeling our best.

"Blue is the only color which maintains its own character in all its tones ... it will always stay blue." - Raoul Dufy

Incorporating More Blue Spaces

Spend More Time Outside

One way to incorporate more blue spaces into our lives is to spend more time outdoors. The sky and the ocean are two examples of naturally occurring blue spaces that can provide us with many of the benefits discussed above. 

The Blue Effect: How the Color Blue Affects Our Well-Being
Photo by steffi harms on Unsplash 

More Beach or Lake Visits

Visit the beach or a lake more often. One of the easiest ways to incorporate more blue spaces into our lives is to visit bodies of water regularly. The sound of waves crashing against the shore or a gentle stream can have a calming effect on our minds and help reduce stress and anxiety. Plus, the fresh air and sunlight can boost our mood and overall health.

Water Sports

Bring nature indoors. If you need easy access to a body of water, you can still incorporate blue spaces into your daily life by bringing nature indoors. This can be as simple as placing a fish tank in your home or office or adding a few plants to your space. The presence of water and greenery can help create a calming and peaceful atmosphere.

Closing Thoughts

As a corporate wellness company, we are always looking for ways to improve our client's employees' mental and physical well-being. One strategy that we have found to be particularly effective is the incorporation of blue spaces into the work environment.

Studies have shown that blue hues can have a calming and soothing effect on people, reducing stress and improving overall feelings of well-being. This can be especially beneficial in a corporate setting, where employees are often pressured to meet deadlines and perform at their best. Have you tried incorporating blue into your workplace? We would like to hear about your experience if you have one.

Wellness

Why It's Time to Step Away from the 10,000-Step Goal

September 2, 2023
Nitesh Padghan

India, with its vibrant mix of tradition and modernity, has been a silent observer of global health trends. In bustling cities from Mumbai to Bengaluru, where skyscrapers touch the heavens and streets buzz with life, a wellness revolution is unfolding. At its heart? The time-honored goal of 10,000 steps. But as the corporate world evolves, it's time we pause, reassess, and ask: Is this step count really the answer for employee health?

You see, every organization, from startups in Hyderabad to tech giants in Pune, wants a workforce that's not just present, but thriving. The '10,000 steps a day' mantra, for years, has been the go-to solution. On paper, it's straightforward. In practice? Maybe not so much. Especially when you consider the hustle of Indian urban life, where juggling work, family, and self-care can be a daily tightrope walk.

Unpacking the 10,000-Step Enigma

We've all heard it. The clarion call to march towards the 10,000-step milestone. But where did this number even come from? Not a medical lab or a wellness guru, but a 1964 marketing strategy in Japan. As the Olympics fever soared, a company marketed a pedometer, weaving the 10,000-step narrative. Fast forward, and this number has cemented itself in the global wellness lexicon.

manpo–kei (10,000 steps meter)

But here's the rub. For the average Indian employee, swamped with tasks and battling city traffic, this target often feels like scaling Mount Everest daily. If you're strolling at a leisurely 100 steps a minute, this goal translates to nearly 12 hours of walking every week. It's not just daunting—it can feel downright unattainable, especially for those tucked away in office cubicles or stationed at shopfronts.

The Science Speaks

Here's where things get interesting. Global studies, with sample sizes in the hundreds of thousands, are flipping the script. Turns out, it's not about hitting a lofty target, but consistent, meaningful activity. An increase of just 500 steps daily (that's a mere five-minute jaunt) can slash cardiovascular risks by 7%. Ramp it up to 1,000 steps, and the overall mortality risk dips by 15%. The real sweet spot? A more doable 4,000 steps.

This isn't just about numbers. It's about understanding the diverse fabric of the Indian workforce. The young techie in Gurgaon might be game for a 10k challenge. But the seasoned executive in Chennai? Perhaps not. And that's okay. The focus should be holistic wellness, not a one-size-fits-all metric.

Wellness in the Tech Era

India's tech prowess is no secret. From mobile apps to digital platforms, technology is reshaping how we approach wellness. The old-school pedometer has made way for sleek apps that don't just count steps but offer a holistic view of health. The Indian employee today has a suite of digital tools at their fingertips, tracking everything from sleep patterns to nutrition.

Companies too are catching on. Innovative platforms are offering rewards for wellness milestones, bridging physical health with tangible incentives. It's a win-win, ensuring employees are engaged, motivated, and on a path to holistic health. After all, in today's dynamic corporate landscape, employee well-being is not just a perk—it's a priority.

Redefining Workplace Wellness Goals

The 10,000-step goal, while inspirational for some, might need a rethink. As India strides into a new era of corporate wellness, the emphasis should shift from lofty targets to sustainable, meaningful wellness practices. Whether it's flexible work hours to accommodate physical activity, office spaces designed for movement or digital tools to track and reward wellness, it's clear: the future of employee health is holistic, inclusive, and personalized.

In essence, while the 10,000 steps might still find enthusiasts, the broader goal is clear: crafting a wellness narrative that's rooted in scientific insights, practicality, and the diverse needs of the Indian workforce. After all, in the intricate dance of well-being, it's not just about the steps, but the journey itself.

Corporate Wellbeing

Health for All: A Call for Action on World Health Day

April 6, 2023
The Wellness Tribe Team

Today on World Health Day, we celebrate the remarkable progress made in global health over the past 75 years. This year's theme, "Health for All," highlights the importance of ensuring everyone has access to quality health services regardless of their income, location, or social status. While there is still much work to be done, it's important to recognize the significant strides made in improving public health around the world.

In the past 75 years, life expectancy has increased by 25 years globally. This is just one example of the many achievements made possible through advances in healthcare and public health initiatives. However, as we celebrate the progress made so far, it's also essential to address the challenges that remain in achieving health equity for all. 

In this article, we will explore the current state of healthcare in India and how digital transformation is driving progress. We will also provide actionable steps that employers can take to support employee well-being and promote a workplace health culture. 

Transforming Challenges into Opportunities

India's healthcare sector has been facing several challenges for a long time, including limited access to healthcare, low healthcare spending, and inadequate healthcare infrastructure. However, these challenges have paved the way for digital transformation in healthcare, making healthcare services more accessible, affordable, and effective than ever before.

According to the National Health Profile 2019 report, India had only one government allopathic doctor for every 10,926 people, one government hospital bed for every 2,046 people, and only 0.8 nurses per 1,000 people. These figures reflect the challenges that India's healthcare sector challenges, leading to a lack of access to basic healthcare services for many.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic has acted as a catalyst for digital transformation in healthcare, enabling healthcare providers to adopt innovative approaches to healthcare delivery. According to the National Medical Commission, there were 13 lakh allopathic doctors and 5.65 lakh AYUSH doctors as of June 2022, with a doctor-population ratio of 1:834, better than the WHO standard of 1:1000.

Moreover, the Indian government has launched several digital initiatives to transform the healthcare sector, such as the National Health Digital Mission (NDHM). 

The NDHM aims to create a national digital health ecosystem, providing access to health services, electronic health records, and other health-related services through a single digital platform. The initiative has already seen considerable success, with over 1.4 million patients registered on the platform by January 2021.

"Health is a human right. Every person deserves to live a healthy life regardless of their age, gender, ethnicity, or economic status. On this World Health Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to achieving health for all by ensuring equal access to quality healthcare services." - Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization.

5 Key Trends in Human-Centered Healthcare

At The Wellness Tribe, we have observed several key trends in data that are paving the way for a more human-centered approach to healthcare. These trends are transforming the healthcare landscape and enabling better outcomes for individuals. Let's take a closer look at these trends:

1. The Rise of Personalized Health

The healthcare industry is moving towards personalized medicine, which means using data to tailor treatments to each individual's unique needs. Personalized health is becoming a reality due to advances in genomics, artificial intelligence, and wearables. With customized health, doctors can make more accurate diagnoses, and patients can receive more targeted treatments.

2. Data Liquidity and Remote Care

The pandemic has accelerated the trend toward remote care and telemedicine. With the rise of data liquidity, healthcare providers can easily access and share patient data across platforms, making remote care and telemedicine more efficient and effective. In addition, patients can receive virtual consultations and care from the comfort of their own homes, improving access to care.

3. Interconnecting Data for Highly Personalized Care

Healthcare providers can connect, analyze, and share health data from multiple sources, including electronic health records, wearables, and social determinants of health, to provide highly personalized care by connecting, analyzing, and sharing data. 

It is possible to develop more targeted treatments for patients when healthcare providers interconnect this broad-based data.

4. Trusted Intelligence and Engagement

As healthcare providers gain more access to data, they also need to develop trust with patients and other stakeholders. As trusted intelligence systems emerge, healthcare providers can better serve patients and improve outcomes by fostering trust and engagement.

5. Embracing a Future-Ready Culture and Workforce

As healthcare becomes increasingly data-driven, it is essential to have a future-ready culture and workforce that embraces digital technologies. Clinicians must leverage medical, data, and behavioral science knowledge and skills to deliver the personalized care demanded by patients. To support this shift, healthcare entities must invest in education, training, and recruiting talent.

By embracing these trends, healthcare providers can create a more human-centered approach to healthcare that prioritizes the needs of patients. At The Wellness Tribe, we believe these trends will continue to shape the healthcare landscape in the coming years, leading to better health outcomes for all.

Taking Action for a Healthier Future

As we celebrate World Health Day this year, the focus should be on how to bring Health for All from a slogan to reality. As HR professionals and leaders in the corporate world, you have a crucial role to play in ensuring access to healthcare for all. Here are some action points for companies on this World Health Day:

1. Prioritizing Well-being Over Profit

The first step in creating a healthier future is to shift from economies driven by profit and pollution to economies driven by fairness and well-being. As HR leaders, we can take the lead in creating a culture that values employee well-being and prioritizes mental and physical health. By investing in employee wellness programs and creating a healthy work environment, we can set an example for other industries to follow.

2. Promoting Social Participation and Self-Care

Engaging and empowering individuals, families, and communities for increased social participation and enhanced self-care in health is key to achieving Health for All. As HR professionals, we can encourage employee engagement in wellness initiatives and provide them with the tools and resources they need to prioritize their health. By fostering a culture of self-care and promoting social participation in health initiatives, we can create a healthier and happier workforce.

3. Using a Primary Health Care Approach

Strengthening integrated national health systems using a primary health care (PHC) approach is crucial for delivering essential quality services with financial protection. As HR leaders, we can work towards creating a health-conscious work environment that emphasizes prevention and early intervention. By providing access to preventive healthcare services and encouraging regular health check-ups, we can help employees stay healthy and catch potential health issues early on.

4. Enabling Non-State Actors

Enabling non-state actors to participate in government-led planning, progress reviews, or implementation towards universal health coverage (UHC) is important in achieving Health for All. As HR leaders, we can advocate for government-led healthcare initiatives and encourage employees to get involved in social causes related to healthcare. By promoting awareness and advocacy around healthcare issues, we can contribute to the larger goal of achieving Health for All.

By prioritizing employee well-being, promoting self-care and social participation, and advocating for government-led healthcare initiatives, we can play an important role in achieving Health for All.

Together We Can

As we celebrate World Health Day 2023, it's important to reflect on the progress that has been made in global health over the past 75 years. However, it's also crucial to recognize the challenges that remain and the need for continued innovation and improvement.

At The Wellness Tribe, we recognize the importance of employee well-being in promoting overall health and happiness. By taking small yet significant steps to support employee well-being, companies can positively impact their workforce and, ultimately, their bottom line.

We encourage companies to implement unique and uncommon approaches to support employee well-being, such as offering healthy food options and mindfulness training. By taking action and prioritizing employee health, companies can create a culture of wellness that will benefit both employees and the organization as a whole.

If you're interested in learning more about how The Wellness Tribe can help support employee well-being through our customized corporate wellness programs, please reach out to us today. 

Let's work together to impact global health positively, one company at a time.

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This month we are focusing on food and how it affects your mental health. Join us as we bring in the most relevant interesting content from across the wellness segment.

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